Posts Tagged ‘media’

Mobile ICTs as Ordinary Technologies: Stories and Experiences - January 18th, 2013

The dilemma of the smartphone

Congratulations to Informatics grad student, Ellie Harmon on passing her advancement to candidacy, with her work entitled, “Mobile ICTs as Ordinary Technologies: Stories and Experiences”.

“Though smartphones are increasingly commonplace and seemingly ordinary objects for many Americans, concerns about their recent and rapid proliferation abound. Far from the promises of UbiComp visionaries, even as smartphones become pervasive, they fail to fade away as invisible or unremarkable technologies. Instead, as noted by Paul Dourish & Gennevieve Bell, the ubiquitous computing of the present is “messy” and “contested” [Dourish & Bell 2011]. Mimi Ito and Daisuke Okabe have pointed to the emergence of new “technosocial situations” alongside the integration of mobile phones into social life, noting that new practices are simultaneously celebrated and criticized [Ito & Okabe 2005]. Heather Horst and Daniel Miller call out the “rapid” spread of cell phones, as well as the “dynamic” nature of the phenomenon as it shifts and evolves over the course of mere “days and months” [Horscht & Miller 2007].

It is this instability, and the unsettled nature of the smartphone experience that I explore in my research. I take a practice-based approach, asking how this device is used, integrated, and negotiated within the context of ordinary life. In this talk I will first present an analysis of the stories about the smartphone that circulate in popular media. I highlight two common tropes: one calling for increased technological integration, the other urging individuals to dis-integrate the smartphone from daily life. I examine the idealized subject positions of these two tropes and show how both simplistic stories call on the same overarching values to compel opposing individual actions. I then reflect on the conflicts experienced by individuals when they try to align and account for their own actions in relation to these multiple contradictory narratives. In the second half of the talk I present a more open-ended discussion of my ongoing and future fieldwork with families in southern California and hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail. Building from the stories identified in the media analysis, my fieldwork examines the shifting experiences of subjectivity, self & society, and time & place in the context of individual engagements with personal mobile ICTs.”

Committee: Melissa Mazmanian (chair), Kavita Philip, Paul Dourish, Bill Maurer, Geof Bowker

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Posted: 1/18/13 8:07 pm UTC by Make the First Comment
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Jed in HuffPo and Page - December 7th, 2012

Jed, our local expert on digital identity, is quoted in an article in HuffPo about Death and Facebook profiles and in the German magazine PAGE about ummm….. something …. Congrats Jed! Keep up the good work.:

The Web is profoundly changing the life of someone’s memory after their death.

“There aren’t really any norms around death and social media yet. People are kind of making it up as they go along,” says Jed Brubaker, a leading scholar in the relatively new field of digital identity and a doctoral candidate in informatics at the University of California-Irvine. “But what’s known is that this Facebook generation will have more experiences with death than any generation before it. Because anyone you ever knew, people who have naturally faded from your life, will remain there and you will stumble into them and realize they are dead.” [citation]


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Posted: 12/7/12 11:40 pm UTC by Add Your Comment
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Dawn of the Digital Sweatshop - August 2nd, 2012

pavement

Props to LUCI/Informatics folks/friends who got to weigh in on this piece in the East Bay Express about Digital Sweatshops:

“There’s this sort of competitive insanity of the business environment,” said Six Silberman, a longtime observer of the field who helped create a forum, Turkopticon, for people doing this kind of work. “And everyone’s trying to cut costs as strenuously and as rapidly as possible.” In a globalized economy, that’s easy to do: Mechanical Turkers — even those who live in the US — make somewhere around $1.50 an hour on average, enjoy no worker protections, and have no benefits.

Even that might be an overstatement: Numbers are hard to track and vary from worker to worker, but Ipeirotis has estimated the average hourly wage to be roughly $2, while Joel Ross of UC Irvine’s Department of Informatics places it closer to $1.25 — and whatever it is, it’s certainly lower than the federal minimum wage of $7.25.

In 2008, Silberman, along with Turkopticon’s cofounder, Lilly Irani, created a HIT to ask workers what their ideal “turker’s bill of rights would look like.” The vast majority of the 67 answers included some kind of recourse for work that’s rejected. “It’s disheartening to have your work rejected for something as simple as claiming an ‘Apple’ and a ‘Giraffe’ are not identical,” wrote one Turker. “I don’t care about the penny I didn’t earn for [not] knowing the difference between an apple and a giraffe, but I’m angry that MT will take requester’s money but not manage, oversee, or mediate the problems and injustices on their site.”

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Posted: 8/2/12 5:48 pm UTC by Make the First Comment
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LA Times reports on Intel grant - July 2nd, 2012

LA Times Logo

Hot on the heels of the public announcement of the Intel Science and Technology Center for Social Computing is this article in the LA Times. There’s not much new information in it, but its an important venue!

“UC Irvine is the research hub, with four other campuses participating. The university will receive $5 million over five years, with an additional $7.5 million being split among the other universities.

Experts from those schools, which include Cornell University, Indiana University, the Georgia Institute of Technology and New York University, specialize in anthropology, media studies, digital humanities, philosophy and computer science, among other disciplines.

Each year, the research center will explore a new defining theme, the first being restoring “materiality” to information. Researchers will explore the “connection of information to the physical world,” Dourish said.

Intel researchers will work with dozens of faculty members and graduate and doctoral students in the campus labs. The research will not be owned by Intel but will instead be public, open intellectual property, the university said.” [citation]

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Posted: 7/2/12 4:17 pm UTC by Make the First Comment
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Is Jed trending? Technorati article goes live - March 8th, 2012

Technorati logoFrom Technorati “Over 30 Million Accounts on Facebook Belong to Dead People”

A PhD candidate at UC Irvine, Jed Brubaker, studies death and social media and has written about how both service providers such as Facebook and “friends” of the deceased handle death and social media in a research study called Death and the Social Network: The Persistence of Digital Identity.

Full article

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Posted: 3/8/12 5:58 pm UTC by Make the First Comment
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Informing and Performing: Investigating How Mediated Sociality Becomes Visible - July 21st, 2011

Moleskins and Pens

Photo courtesy of paulworthington

Congratulations to former Informatics grad student Dr. Sharon Xianghua Ding, Informatics faculty member Don Patterson and their coauthors Wendy Kellog and Thomas Erickson on having their paper,
‘Informing and Performing: Investigating How Mediated Sociality Becomes Visible’ accepted to Personal and Ubiquitous Computing (Springer journal).

Abstract: In the Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) and ubiquitous computing literature, making people’s presence and activities visible as a design approach has been extensively explored to enhance computer mediated interactions and collaborations. This process has developed under the rubrics of “awareness”, “social translucence”, “social activity indicators”, “social navigation”, etc. Although the name and details vary, the central ideas are similar. By making social presence and activities more visible or perceivable, they provide social context for members to make sense of situations and guide their activities more informatively and appropriately. In this work, we introduce a class of visualizations called social context displays, which use and share graphical representations to depict people’s presence and activity information with an explicit focus on groups. The aim of this work is to examine social context displays in use and contribute new abstractions for understanding how making social information more visible works in general. Through our first hand experience with user-centered design and empirical investigations of two social context displays in real settings, we uncovered not only how they provide social context to inform actions and decisions, but also how members perform and manage their self- and group-representations through the display. Drawing on Goffman’s performance framework, we provide a detailed description of how people react and respond to these two social context displays, and reconsider some of the broader issues associated with computer-mediated interactions such as privacy, context, and media richness.

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Posted: 7/21/11 5:00 pm UTC by Make the First Comment
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